NORTH MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORY & SCIENCE IN COLLABORATION WITH THE YWCA LANCASTER PRESENTS
Race: Are We So Different?
Exhibition Will Help Visitors Explore
The Reality – And Unreality – Of Race.
June 7- September 28, 2014
On Saturday, June 7, the North Museum of Natural History & Science and the YWCA Lancaster will confront the issue of race and racism in the United States when the RACE: Are We So Different? exhibition opens in Lancaster. A project of American Anthropological Association in collaboration with the Science Museum of Minnesota, RACE will encourage museum visitors to explore the science, history, and everyday impact of race. The exhibition is sponsored locally by the Lancaster County Community Foundation.
“The North Museum, in collaboration with the YWCA Lancaster, is proud to host this exhibit which examines the question of race from a multi-disciplinary perspective,” said Margaret M. Marino, North Museum Executive Director. Added Maureen Powers, YWCA Lancaster Chief Executive Officer, “This timely exhibition will promote community-wide discussions and understanding of the concept of race, its systemic misuse, and its impact on our identities.”
Three perspectives on a wide-reaching topic
The RACE exhibit addresses the topics of race and racism from three different perspectives. The three sections are interwoven and tell a compelling story of science with deep and lasting social impact.
• Science: In this section of the exhibition, visitors will discover that human beings are more alike than any other living species, and no one gene or set of genes can support the idea of race.
• History: Ideas about race have been around for hundreds of years, and they have changed over time. This section of RACE demonstrates that, throughout American history, economic interests, popular culture, science, politics, and the struggle for power have played a role in shaping our understanding of race.
• Everyday experience: Though race may not be a real biological concept, it certainly is real both socially and culturally. In this section of the exhibition, visitors will explore the personal experiences of race in our schools, neighborhoods, health care systems, sports and entertainment industries, and more.
“Race is an important part of the American story,” notes Robert Garfinkle, the Science Museum of Minnesota’s Program Director for Special Projects and a guiding force in the creation of the RACE exhibit. “This exhibit gives visitors the opportunity to look at the way race touches our lives and the lives of the generations that came before us. They can explore the way they see themselves and others and see that all of our lives are affected by race and racism, both in overt and subtle ways…We hope its content will challenge communities to increase the quantity – and the quality – of their conversations about race and racism and the experiences they’ve had in their lives.”
Expert and Community involvement
The development of the RACE exhibition included an 18-member group of advisors to help influence the exhibit experience. The advisors met monthly during the exhibition’s development to consult with exhibition and programming staff, help shape the program and events surrounding the exhibition, and extend the impact of the exhibition in the community.
The RACE exhibition is part of a larger public education project from American Anthropological Association and funded by the Ford Foundation and the National Science Foundation. The project is intended to inform and shape the national dialogue about race. In addition to the exhibit, the initiative includes a website (http://www.understandingrace.org), educational materials, and conferences designed to share research and information with the public.
Local Events in conjunction with the exhibit
Discussion Circles will be available by reservation only for groups of up to 20
• Facilitated by trained staff and volunteers from YWCA Lancaster, RACE can be an important tool to explore preconceptions and attitudes in an involving, non-confrontational way.
• Employees can explore issues of race and discrimination on their own terms, without being put on the defensive.
• Real-world examples of how race has affected our history and shapes our lives today. This allows staff to build empathy and understanding for differences and variations.
• Managing diversity is a strategic priority and a competitive necessity for many organizations.
• Creating a common experience exploring issues of race can create a more comfortable and supportive work environment: costs associated with excessive turnover and absenteeism can be reduced, problem-solving and innovation are stimulated, and tolerance for individuality is enhanced.
• Exploring issues of diversity in a way that makes all individuals feel involved can help to reduce exposure for employee complaints and lawsuits.
For more information or to make your reservation, please contact Jill Showalter at 717-291-4371.
About the North Museum of Natural History & Science
The North Museum of Natural History & Science is located at 400 College Avenue in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. The Museum is open Tuesday-Saturday: 10:00 am – 5:00 pm, and on Sunday: Noon – 5:00 pm. Admission for North Museum is free for Members, $7.50 for adults, $6.50 for juniors (ages 3-17) and seniors (65 and over). Planetarium shows are an additional $2.50 to the price of admission. The Museum is free for children under three. For more information, call 717-291-3941 or visit www.northmuseum.org.
About the YWCA Lancaster
The YWCA is located at 110 N. Lime Street in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. The YWCA Lancaster is dedicated to eliminating racism, empowering women and promoting peace, justice, freedom and dignity for all. For more information, call 717-393-1735 or visit www.ywcalancaster.org.
YWCA Lancaster Homecoming!
Saturday, Sept. 6, 2014
Noon to 5 p.m.
Bring the family and your friends for an afternoon packed with fun activities that harken back to the clubs, classes and programs of YWCA Lancaster over the last several decades. This is sure to be a day to remember by reconnecting with old friends and getting to know the current YWCA Lancaster staff and our programs.
Who should attend? Anyone who frequented YWCA Lancaster for fun, education or services. Have you ever enjoyed the following at YWCA Lancaster?
- Campfire Girls
- Pig-tailers Club
- Swimming Lessons/Pool
- Summer Day Camp for School Agers
- Girl Power
- Racial Justice Study Circles/Initiatives
- SAPCC Training
- Town Fair
- Hanging of the Greens
- Dance lessons
- Theater lessons
- And so much more!
Download the Homecoming schedule of events